The FACTS About Steel House Columns

It is common practice in the domestic building industry for carpenters, builder’s, handymen and many house re-stumpers alike, to use 75mm x 75mm steel house columns and it is very common for them to refer to them as “galvanised steel” column posts or supports or steel house stumps. But, DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOU’RE PAYING FOR, OR GETTING FOR THAT MATTER?

It is common practice for the ‘El cheapo’ contractors to use DuraGal steel columns or SupaGal steel columns, rather than hot dip galvanised steel. DuraGal & SupaGalare of a lower quality coating and far less expensive than the top quality, hot dip treated galvanised steel columns that I use and recommend.

Hot dip galvanised steel columns, which are the best money can buy and really are the kind that you should use if you’re going to replace or change your old house stumps from wood or concrete stumps to steel columns, or replacing rusted out steel columns. This is especially relevant if you live within 5 kilometres from any salt water or salt air, or any of your neighbours within 5 kilometres have a salt water pool.

I would not use anything but Hot Dip Galvanised Steel Columns!


The four types of steel house columns:

There are four types of steel house columns, which I will list here for you and in order of quality from best to worst. I shall also explain the reasons as to why this is, and how price can differ between the qualities of the house columns and how they are manufactured.

1. ‘Hot dip galvanised’ steel columns : These are THE BEST money can buy!
They are manufactured from non-treated square tubular steel. Top and bottom plates are welded onto them. There are two 12mm holes drilled into both the top and bottom plates & centre of the tube. They are then sent away to the galvaniser, who then acid bathes them, to rid them of any grease, dirt and oils…Once this is done, the column is removed from the acid bath, dried and then submerged into the hot liquid galvanising mixture, where the column is treated with a coating of galvanising – 45 microns thick – inside and out – as per ‘Australian standards 1650’ which will prevent any rusting what so ever!

2. ‘SupaGal’ steel columns are not acid bathed and are nothing more than a sprayed on zinc coating over the steel column, from the supplier after it was manufactured. The fabricator will weld non-treated top and bottom plates onto the column, then treat the welds with what is called ‘a zinc stick’, then cold galvanising paint, then sprayed with silver paint to make the column look as though it is galvanised steel, as per Australian standard 1650/2.

3. ‘DuraGal’ steel columns are not acid bathed or dipped! It is merely a zinc coating sprayed only on the out side of the steel – not coated inside. Again; The fabricator will weld; non-treated top and bottom plates onto the column, then treat the welds with what is called a zinc stick, then cold galvanising paint and then sprayed with silver paint to make the column look as though it is galvanised steel, as per Australian standard 1650/2.

4. Standard steel columns arenot acid bathed or dipped; the welds are not zinc sticked and are only painted with one coat of blue or red oxide paint, outside only, including top and bottom plates – No Australian standard applies!


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